Icon SPM

Bruker Dimension Icon® Atomic Force Microscope is equipped with ScanAsyst® automatic image optimization mode based on PeakForce Tapping technology, which enables users to obtain consistent high-quality results more easier and faster. This system is capable of many SPM applications (contact mode, tapping mode, ScanAsyst peakforce mode, AFM in fluid, Phase imaging, piezoresponse, and many others.) The following unique new capabilities will broaden our current SPM applications:

Quantitative Nano-Mechanical Mapping

The Icon SPM supports PeakForce QNM® Imaging Mode, enabling researchers to map and distinguish quantitatively between nanomechanical properties while simultaneously imaging sample topography at high resolution. This technology operates over an extremely wide range (1MPa to 50GPa for modulus and 10pN to 10μN for adhesion) to characterize a large variety of sample types.

Electrical Characterization

Carry out electrical characterization at the nanoscale with greater sensitivity and dynamic range using exclusive PeakForce TUNA & PeakForce KPFM modules.

Key capabilities:

  • Conductivity mapping on the most delicate sample: charges, charge distribution, diffusions, surface potential distribution
  • Correlated quantitative nanomechanical properties (modulus & adhesion)
  • Information for rational nanostructure optimization – ID components & their distribution.
Nanoindentation and Nanomanipulation

Nanoindentation--investigate hardiness of small and soft samples. The typical indentation force range available with our instrument is 1-100 μN with a resolution of less than 0.5 μN. The diamond tip mounted to the end of the cantilever has a tip radius less than 12 nm to ensure good imaging resolution and nanometer-scale indents.

Nanolithography performs at the nanometer and molecular scales. The Icon’s XYZ closed-loop scanner provides precise probe positioning with no piezo creep and extremely low noise for the best positioning of any available nanomanipulation system.


Execute temperature control and thermal analysis on samples from 20°C to 200°C while scanning in some AFM modes.

Imaging Modes and Capabilities
  • Contact Mode AFM
  • TappingMode AFM
  • PeakForce Tapping
  • ScanAsyst® – automatic image optimization mode
  • PhaseImaging
  • LiftMode
  • Torsional Resonance Mode (TRmode)
  • Magnetic Force Microscopy (MFM)
  • Electrostatic Force Microscopy (EFM)
  • Lateral Force Microscopy (LFM)
  • Piezo Response (PFM)
  • Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM)
  • AFM in Fluid
  • Force curve
  • Nano-Indentation
  • Nanomanipulation (Nanolithography)
  • PeakForce QNM® – new sample information with nanoscale quantitative nano-mechanical mapping (Young’s modulus, surface adhesion, energy dissipation, etc.)
  • PeakForce KPFM™ – New quantitative, highest resolution workfunction measurements.
  • PeakForce TUNA™ – highest resolution current mapping on fragile samples in conjunction with mechanical information.
  • Sample Heating – temperature-gradient (20°C to 200°C) studies with greatest precision.